Can Ducks Eat Millet?

Written By Emily

As someone who spends her days surrounded by ducks, I’ve learned a thing or two about what they can and can’t chow down on. More about me here.


Did you know that millet has more protein and calcium in its raw form than corn?

Per 3.5oz (100gr) millet has 11g protein and 8mg calcium compared to 3g protein and 2mg calcium that your ducks get from corn.

Millet feeding ducks in moderation

Our lovely ducks can eat millet, and in this short post, you will hear even more good news.

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What Is Millet?

Millet is grass with tiny seeds that comes from the Paniceae family.

 

It is a grain used for thousands of years as human and animal food.

The productivity of this grain is super high, and it has a short growing season even in harsh conditions without too much water.

Of course, perfect conditions will make millet thrive.

But even if the year is dry, millet will have better results than most other grain crops like corn, wheat, or rice.

Health Benefits of Millet for Ducks

We all know what our ducks need.

It doesn’t matter if you have growing ducks or breeding stock; you must provide them with quite a few things.

Millet grains for ducks

Niacin, calcium, protein, phosphorus, manganese, riboflavin, and vitamins A, D3, and K are only a fraction of the nutrients we need to provide them if we want healthy ducks and eggs.

The table will show you how many nutrients millet has compared to corn in raw form.

You will get a better picture of how healthy this grain is for ducks.

NutrientsMillet
raw per 3.5oz (100gr)
Corn
raw per 3.5oz (100gr)
Protein11g3g
Fat4.3g1.3g
Fiber8.5g3g
Niacin4.72mg1.8mg
Vitamin B60.38mg0.1mg
Vitamin C1.6mg6.8mg
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)0.29mg0.01mg
Calcium8mg2mg
Magnesium114mg37mg
Phosphorus285mg89mg
Potassium195mg270mg
Manganese1.6mg0.2mg
Millet Vs. Corn

Wild Ducks and Millet

A fun fact is that duck hunters are planting millet in the area where they want to hunt over winter.

That is the only way they can keep wild ducks stay over the winter.

That shows how easy this grain is to grow and how cheap it is to cover acres of land with millet with minimal maintenance.

And, of course, how ducks appreciate millet. They can withstand winter only by eating this grain.

Can Ducks Eat Only Millet?

There are some debates on whether millet could replace duck feed or not.

I would say mixing millet with regular duck feed could help reduce the cost of feeding ducks and help them develop.

Ducks love millet

However, this study says that they came to results that pearl millet has noticed significant weight gains in ducks that eat more millet than corn.

Now you can start experimenting as well, but I only like to mix them a little bit of millet in their regular feed.

How to Prepare Millet for Ducks

You can mix between 10% and 30% with commercial duck feed.

Some people are mixing even more, up to 50%.

I don’t like doing that because millet is slightly higher in fat, which could be a problem.

If you checked out the table above, you noticed that millet has 4.3g of fat compared to 1.3g of fat that corn has in raw form.

Purina duck feed pellets have 2.3% fat. And other brands maybe 3% of fat or so.

Please remember that millet is fat-rich grain, so I would not start feeding them only millet.

Final Words

Because this grain has a slightly higher fat percentage than needed, I would not feed them too much – but definitely, ducks can eat millet in moderation.

It all comes down to achieving the exact balance of vitamins, minerals, protein, and fat in ducks’ diet, and only specially formulated duck feed can accomplish that.

That’s why we should give all other snacks like vegetables, fruit, and even grains like millet in moderation.

Hey there, I’m Emily, the resident duck fanatic on my homestead. My farm may be home to a variety of critters – goats, chickens, sheep – but my ducks are my pride and joy. And as someone who spends her days surrounded by feathered friends, I’ve learned a thing or two about what they can and can’t chow down on. So if you’re ever wondering if ducks can eat bananas, bread, or whatever else you’re considering offering them, just give me a holler. I’m always happy to share my avian expertise with fellow duck enthusiasts.

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